Rolls-Royce 102EX electric Phantom

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What Car? Staff
28 February 2011

Pride of place on the Rolls-Royce motor show stand goes to an electric-powered concept version of the Phantom.

Although there are no plans to put the car into production, the 102EX concept car is being used by the company as a test bed for alternative drivetrains.

After its unveiling at the show, it will travel all over the world, and owners, enthusiasts and members of the public will be allowed to test-drive it and give feedback.

In particular, the company wants to find out what sort of range the car will have, how it will operate in extreme climates and whether it meets customers expectations of Rolls-Royce cars.

The companys CEO, Torsten Mller-tvs, said: 'We have engineered the worlds first battery electric vehicle for the ultra-luxury segment.

'With this vehicle, we begin an exploration into alternative drivetrains, seeking clarity on which technologies may be suitable to drive Rolls-Royce motor cars of the future.'

Company bosses have also admitted the car has a wider test role.

'The idea of induction charging, where you drive your car over an inductor in, perhaps, your garage floor, and it charges automatically, is an interesting one,' said BMW Group director of sales and marketing Ian Robertson.

'We saw from our Mini E trials that people didn't like using public charging points. They were seen somehow as being dirty, and so they preferred to use a charging point at home. The Rolls concept takes that a step further and removes the need for any cables or plugs. We charge our phones by induction now, so it is one direction for us to look at for the future.'